The NBA has many colorful and delightful mascots, from the Suns' legendary Gorilla to the Rockets' adorable trickster bear Clutch. There are also some really unfortunate ones, though, including the Heat's anthropomorphic ember Burnie, who enjoys posing inappropriately with the Larry O'Brien Trophy. When a mascot makes its first appearance, it's unclear if the character will rise to the ranks of the NBA's best or get replaced by a new focus-grouped creation in a few years.
So, for the time being, we should withhold most judgment on the BrooklyKnight (henceforth "Brooklyn Knight" or "Knight," since those are real words), the new Nets' mascot who made his (or maybe her!) debut at the team's home opener against the Toronto Raptors on Saturday. Ross Burlingame of ComicBook.com has more on his origins (via PBT):
According to the team, "He is equipped to handle almost any threat with a protective metal B on his chest, metal knee, elbow, and face coverings, defined muscles, including a six-pack, and a multi-functional cape." [...]
"As a Brooklynite and a hardcore hoops fan, for me to get the opportunity to help create a Super Hero for my home borough's new team was a dream come true," said Axel Alonso, Editor in Chief, Marvel Entertainment. "Working with the Nets staff, we have created a team Super Hero that is unlike anything the NBA has ever seen; a timeless character who can stand shoulder to shoulder with icons like Spider-Man, Captain America, Wolverine, and Thor. Let's go, Nets!" [...]
"Forged from the blood, sweat and tears of Brooklyn itself — always ready to defend his home and defeat any challenger — all hail the BrooklyKnight!" exclaimed Bill Rosemann, Editor, Marvel Custom Solutions. "When Nets fans meet their guardian, they will immediately know that the House of Ideas has once again unleashed a hero who will soon be known all over the world for his nobility, grit, and strength. Brooklyn, your champion is here!"
The Nets lowered their new hero from the rafters, as has become custom for pretty much every furry and/or spandex creature in the league. The Knight, created in conjunction with comic giant Marvel, did not make the impression the franchise had likely hoped for, in that pretty much everyone made fun of him. Of course, that doesn't mean he'll be a complete failure. Rumble the Bison of the Oklahoma City Thunder missed his first two dunks on the night he was introduced to fans, and he's been just fine since. Of course, I don't think Rumble ever scared Thunder beat writers in the hallway:
With all due respect to the publishing house that once came up with a villain whose persona was based on being laid off from a job making signs, most people agree that the Brooklyn Knight is silly. Still, we have yet to settle on a consensus of just what he looks like. I have concocted three descriptions of the mascot, and you can pick the best. On Election Day, we will combine the most American things in the world: mascots and voting.
1. The Gimp from "Pulp Fiction" if he were into LARP
2. A homemade Boba Fett costume spray-painted black
3. A Medieval Times employee who was fired for being a little too intense
Rock your vote, or suggest a write-in candidate, in the comments.
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